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Google Goggles Improvements Add to Your Search Options

Search sure has come a long way from its blue text link beginnings. While the desktop and mobile versions of Google still offer some of those options there are so many different ways to search now it’s hard for marketers to get their arms around optimizing it all.

Voice search adds a whole new dimension to the discipline and Siri has upped the ante (at least initially as it seems that its Beta tag is proving it should be just that, in beta). The other side of the “new search” has been products like Google Goggles which allows users to take a picture of what they are interested in learning more about then letting Google (hopefully) either identify the object in question and supply additional information about it. I have used the service before and found the need to frame and click an item perfectly was clunky. Now it appears that that has changed.

IAB’s Lists Top 15 Mobile Shopping Cities

Which US city has the most mobile savvy shoppers? I’ll give you a hint, it’s a big city, but not one traditionally known as a shopping mecca. Cross out New York (#2) and San Francisco (#11).

Give up? It’s Houston, with a mobile shopper savviness index of 122. Apparently, the stars at night aren’t the only thing big and bright in Texas. They have the highest percentage of consumers with mobile phones (67%). They also score the highest for retail and social media apps and they love mobile coupons. So, if you run a business in Houston, take note!

This information is part of the IAB’s Mobile Marketing Center of Excellence.

Click through to see the entire infographic which is pretty cool.

Majority of Smartphone Shoppers Do it at Home

It’s kind of ironic, but more people use their mobile phone to shop from home, than use it while on the go. If that doesn’t prove that mobile phones have become part of our daily lives, what does?

comScore studied the shopping habits of smartphone owners this past September and came up with some interesting numbers.

“In September we saw two-thirds of all smartphone owners perform shopping activities on their phones, including comparing products and prices, searching for coupons, taking product pictures or locating a retail store”

So what are folks shopping for? Not surprisingly, the majority of the purchases (47%) are for digital goods such as apps, music and ebooks. What is a surprise is that clothing and accessories rank top for physical goods with 37%. After that, it’s back to the virtual world with daily deals, tickets and gift certificates.

2 Out of 3 Moms Use Mobile to Access the Web

If you didn’t know there’s power in marketing to moms, you haven’t been paying attention. But today’s message is about the mobile mom. Take a look at this graphic from eMarketer.

Not only are moms more likely to own a smartphone than the general public, they’re using it to go online in much greater numbers.

The reason they’ve become so attached to their phones is obvious, it’s a time and sanity saver.

The mobile phone allows mom to check her email, order Pizza Hut for dinner and buy shoes for the kids (at a discount) all while she’s waiting to pick up Johnny from soccer practice.

So What If Facebook Bought Gowalla?

The rate of rumors being truth in this industry is increasing at an alarming rate.

Just take the recent “Facebook Has Purchased Gowalla……Maybe……We Think…..Well, There Are Plenty Of Signs Pointing to It…..Actually Since Mars and Jupiter Are Aligned It Looks Like A Go”. Now Kara Swisher has posted an e-mail that she transcribed from a Gowalla “leaker” saying that the ink on the deal isn’t dry blah, blah, blah.

Who cares?!

I mean really. If Gowalla was bought at a nice price the only people that benefit are the investors. That is not likely to be you or me. If Gowalla was purchased by Facebook it means nothing other than maybe Facebook will be looking at a location based service again but let’s remember that their past efforts in this area ended in a resounding thud.

The Impact of Mobile on Thanksgiving Shopping [Infographic]

When it comes to online shopping, the desktop still rules over any mobile device, but the tide is shifting at a pretty nifty rate.

E-Commerce company Monetate put together an infographic that looks at the impact of mobile and tablets versus desktops. The data represents only online shopping from Thanksgiving through Cyber Monday.

Right off the bat, you can see that the desktop lost a little ground this year when compared to last year. Mobile rose from 3.1% to 7.36%, a nice little bump, but I expected it to be higher. And the conversion rates are not so good, but that’s to be expected given the difficulty of processing a shopping cart on a tiny screen.

Tablets are a surprise, rising from almost nothing (1.06%) in 2010, to 4.68% in 2011.

Carrier IQ: It Must Be A Big Deal If Sen. Franken Speaks Up!

There is a lot of privacy and mobile phone these days as it relates to the software that exists on many (if not most) smartphones call Carrier IQ.

It’s to be used, in its purest sense, to help carriers ID network issues. Ah but as with so many other things in the Internet space, it can do so much more and most of it is what no one should be doing which is watching everything you do on your phone including claims of tracking keystrokes. If you want the complete and gory details you can find articles here, here and here. Apparently, the software is used by AT&T and Sprint but not Verizon and Google claims no affiliation with the software and Apple stopped with iOS5.